Dr Nikos Scarmeas was born and raised in Athens Greece. After obtaining an M.D. degree from the University of Athens he moved to the US and had Neurology residency training and then a 2-year clinical fellowship in Aging and Dementia at Columbia University Medical Center. He also completed a Masters degree in Biostatistics – Epidemiology at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University.
Dr Scarmeas joined the faculty of Columbia University in 2002. He became Associate Professor of Neurology in 2008. Dr Scarmeas joined the faculty of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens in 2011, where he is currently Associate Professsor of Neurology . He currently shares his time between research and clinical work (at Eginition Hospital). His clinical work includes seeing elderly patients with dementias and cognitive dysfunction, supervising and teaching of Medical students and Neurology residents.
His research interests have started from the topic of cognitive reserve (i.e. how higher IQ, education, more demanding occupational attainments, or more engagement in cognitive-social-physical leisure - lifestyle activities can help elderly cope better with the damage caused to their brains by Alzheimer’s disease and aging and therefore reduce their risk for dementia and slow down their rates of cognitive and functional decline). More recently, he has developed a special interest in the contribution of diet (in particular composite dietary patterns such as a Mediterranean-type diet and others) and physical activity in dementias and healthy aging.
Dr Scarmeas is the Principal Investigator in studies funded by either the Alzheimer's Association (IIRG) or the NIH-NIA (RO1) and a Co-Investigator in multiple others. His research work has resulted in more than 120 original publications in highly esteemed journals (>5200 citations, H-index = 41) and multiple presentations in internationally acclaimed scientific conferences - meetings. He reviews for more than 120 international scientific journals and international funding agencies including the Alzheimer’s Association, the US National Institute of Health, the European Union Marie Curie programs etc.